Vaansa Eco Resort | Archframe Design Awards 2023

Uttarakhand lies on the southern slope of the Himalaya range, and the climate and vegetation vary greatly with elevation, from glaciers at the highest elevations to subtropical forests at the lower elevations. The highest elevations are covered by ice and bare rock. Below them, between 3,000 and 5,000 metres (9,800 and 16,000 ft) are montane grasslands and shrublands: the western Himalayan alpine shrub and meadows. Temperate coniferous forests, the western Himalayan subalpine conifer forests, grow just below the tree line. At 3,000 to 2,600 metres (9,800 to 8,500 ft) elevation they transition to the temperate western Himalayan broadleaf forests, which lie in a belt from 2,600 to 1,500 metres (8,500 to 4,900 ft) elevation. Below 1,500 metres (4,900 ft) elevation lie the Himalayan subtropical pine forests. The Upper Gangetic Plains moist deciduous forests and the drier Terai-Duar savanna and grasslands cover the lowlands along the Uttar Pradesh border. This belt is locally known as Bhabhar. These lowland forests have mostly been cleared for agriculture, but a few pockets remain.[19]

Jim Corbett National Park—named after the hunter turned conservationist Jim Corbett who played a key role in its establishment—is the oldest national park in India.The park has sub-Himalayan belt geographical and ecological characteristics.[3] An ecotourism destination,[4] it contains 488 different species of plants and a diverse variety of fauna.. Presently, every season more than 70,000 visitors come to the park from India and other countries.The Jim Corbett National Park is a heaven for the adventure seeker and wildlife adventure lovers. Corbett National Park is India’s first national park which comprises 520.8 km2. area of hills, riverine belts, marshy depressions, grass lands and large lake. The elevation ranges from 1,300 feet to 4,000 feet. Winter nights in Corbett national park are cold but the days are bright and sunny. It rains from July to September.The weather in the park is temperate compared to most other protected areas of India.[15] The temperature may vary from 5 °C (41 °F) to 30 °C (86 °F) during the winter and some mornings are foggy.[15] Summer temperatures normally do not rise above 40 °C (104 °F).[15] Rainfall ranges from light during the dry season to heavy during the monsoons.[2]

The new resort project at Amghari near Ramnagar, Uttarakhand, is intended to be a high-end green development for tourists and will include cottages, guest rooms, restaurant and amenities such as a spa and swimming pool. The entire site area is about 5.88 acres with approximately 8% of the site area to be built-up area. As a model development for green resorts, the project seeks to preserve the sense of place, local culture and be environ­mentally sensitive. The project also seeks to attain a high environmental rating using the IGBC’s Green Homes Rating System.

Amgarhi is countryside located in periphery of Corbett National Park, Uttarakhand, India. The name derived from its Mango(Aam) Orchids. It is located 15 km from Ramnagar, and can be accessed by forest road from near the crossing of the Kosi barrage on Ramnagar – Haldwani Road. Features of this location include step farms, old houses, adjoining Jungle, and water streams.

The surrounding area is dominated by Sal and teak trees along with mango, bamboo and rosewood. Also there is a layer of shorter trees and evergreen shrubs. Being a moist deciduous forest the trees have the tendency to shed their leaves in dry seasons. Hence landscaping becomes a key factor of the project.

Being on the foothills also raises the issues of top soil erosion and water run off.

The design primarily aims to address these issues at site planning level inturn creating a micro climate for the users.The units were designed on the basic idea of creating personal envelops which not only provide a private space but also a sense of security.


The project is located at the edge of the Jim Corbett National Park on the foothills of the Himalayas in Uttatrakhand, India. The delicate warm temperate ecology of the region is threatened by two types of natural calamities:

  • Landslides
  • Forest fires.

Both these ravages are further exacerbated due to:

  • Uncontrolled erosion during the wet seasons,
  • Seasonal denudation of foliage during the hot and dry seasons and
  • Anthropogenic deforestation and environmental degradation .

As a model development for green resorts, the project seeks to not only preserve but actively rejuvenate the ecology of the site while being sensitive to local culture and context.


Various strategies for soil stabilisation, waste and water management and bio-diversification have been deployed.

Ecological masterplanning followed a 3-step approach:

  • CATCHMENT DISTRIBUTION: First, suitable water catchment points were located on site. These were developed with peripheral reed-bed plantations and sedimentation tanks for greywater, runoff and harvested rainwater treatment.
  • CONTOUR REMEDIATION: The terraces of this erstwhile agricultural land are remediated through curving topographical manipulations so as to feed the catchment ponds and to drastically reduce the runoff velocity and erosion of topsoil. The design also ensures controllable intake and overflow into the two seasonal streams on site through check-dams and flues at various points on site.
  • BIOLOGICAL RECLAMATION: Large scale plantation of native species is planned in order restore the natural flora and fauna of the site. Deciduous plantations are strategically located to enhance shade on paths and living units during the summer while ensuring penetration of the winter sun. A detailed plan has been developed for promoting undergrowth and aromatic plants and herbs to attract pollinator birds and insects.


Unit level:

  •   The units are designed on the basic idea of creating personal envelops which not only provide a private space but also a sense of security.
  • The units are further clustered to derive a common open spaces for the users.
  • The continous green roof over the single rooms is designed to provide a larger multiutility space and a constant green skyline merging with the surrounding.

Rain catcher umbrellas are key elements of landscape.

There are various active and passive systems employed for the conservation and reuse of natural resources.

Gold Winner – Archframe Design Awards 2023
Design Firm – Anagram Architects
Project Title – Vaansa Eco Resort
Project Category – Hospitality Design
Status – Built
Architect – Vaibhav Dimri
Design Team – Vaibhav Dimri, Madhav Raman, Ayush Prakash, Tarika Jigar Asarawala, Richa Gupta
Profile – Professional Architect
Country – India